May 25, 1997 in Nashua, NH was the last time any alcohol touched these lips! Yup, proud as can be, but more than that grateful.
Look folks, you don’t have to be a rip-roaring, gutter-dwelling drunk to recognize you may have a problem. On May 25, 1997, after a hard night of drinking and being stupid, I woke up, took inventory of my life up to that point and recognized there was ONE constant variable in everything that went awry. That variable was alcohol. Remove that variable and more likely than not, bad things will be minimized and good things could happen.
I am happy to report that a healthy marriage, 4 kids and a rather successful career later, this philosophy proved true for me. Will the same work for you? I have no clue. But what not give it a go?
What’s the ONE thing that is causing you chaos and turmoil? It may not be alcohol, it may be something else. But I assure you, if you have that devil on your shoulder you are NOT ALONE! There are others and they are there to help. Seek ’em out. They will take you in with open arms and help you beat that f’er back.
Look I’m not going to say it’s impossible to do this alone, but man, oh man, it’s going to be tough. Why even tempt it. Get out there, see who else is suffering the way you know you are and put up a fight.
Oh, by the way, the fight is never won. It’s never over. My love of IPAs, Porters and Stouts is still with me today. I still have to tell myself that I will avoid that stuff TODAY, right now, in this moment. That’s all I can control. I get asked a lot if I will ever drink again. I have no clue, but for this moment I will not. When you have fellow travelers helping to carry you along the way though, it makes the battle so much easier. Did I mention the battle will never be fully won? Yes I did, and I will say it again. The battle is for today only, for this hour, for this moment. That is all you can control, the actions you take NOW.
Control what you can and leave the rest behind. That’s what makes the 12 steps of Bill W. so fundamental. The challenge isn’t if you’ll stop whatever it is that’s harming you for the next 20 years. The challenge is if you’ll stop NOW and just for now. Just stop NOW!
My 20 years has consisted of 20 years of NOW moments. Right now, even as I write this, I will not touch alcohol. That’s it. That’s all I can do. And yet, here I am, in a much, much better place.
You can be too. Find friends who can help. They are there and are desperate for you to join them. The enemy wants you to try to battle on your own. Unfortunately, the enemy knows if you do, he’s going to win. Start now, just now and seek out friends to do battle with. It will be worth it.